This article combines the literature on authoritarian regime survival with that on small states to propose a new explanation for the survival and breakdown of authoritarian monarchies. To develop the conjecture that monarchy tends to survive in small countries into a theoretically and empirically sound argument, I follow the process of iterative induction. I first inspect all authoritarian monarchies between 1946 and 2018 and find that countries with monarchic survival have a significantly smaller population size than countries where monarchy broke down. Second, I develop a theoretical explanation for this relation: the feeling of vulnerability, the social proximity, and institutional centralization, which are all typically ascribed to small countries, facilitate the stability of monarchic regimes. I conceptualize this stability with Gerschewski’s model of three pillars of authoritarian stability, co-optation, repression and legitimation; and I argue that smallness enhances each of these three via several channels. Third, to illustrate the plausibility of this explanation I compare two most likely historical cases of monarchies with diverging outcomes: Jordan and Egypt. Fourth, I inspect deviant cases, particularly Bhutan, Maldives and Tonga, to refine and finalize the argument. The main finding is that smallness prevented the violent breakdown of monarchic regimes since 1946.

Country size and the survival of authoritarian monarchies: developing a new argument

Jugl Marlene
2020

Abstract

This article combines the literature on authoritarian regime survival with that on small states to propose a new explanation for the survival and breakdown of authoritarian monarchies. To develop the conjecture that monarchy tends to survive in small countries into a theoretically and empirically sound argument, I follow the process of iterative induction. I first inspect all authoritarian monarchies between 1946 and 2018 and find that countries with monarchic survival have a significantly smaller population size than countries where monarchy broke down. Second, I develop a theoretical explanation for this relation: the feeling of vulnerability, the social proximity, and institutional centralization, which are all typically ascribed to small countries, facilitate the stability of monarchic regimes. I conceptualize this stability with Gerschewski’s model of three pillars of authoritarian stability, co-optation, repression and legitimation; and I argue that smallness enhances each of these three via several channels. Third, to illustrate the plausibility of this explanation I compare two most likely historical cases of monarchies with diverging outcomes: Jordan and Egypt. Fourth, I inspect deviant cases, particularly Bhutan, Maldives and Tonga, to refine and finalize the argument. The main finding is that smallness prevented the violent breakdown of monarchic regimes since 1946.
2019
Jugl, Marlene
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11565/4022244
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